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Anybody have experience w/bladder cancer in kitty? - GREAT Update Post 16!

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  • Anybody have experience w/bladder cancer in kitty? - GREAT Update Post 16!

    I'm so sad... Found out yesterday that what we (me & vet) initially hoped was a bladder infection, is actually bladder cancer in my sweet 4 y.o. snowshoe Siamese Cleo.

    Two weeks of antibiotics gave her some improvement, but within 2 days of completing the antibiotics, the symptoms came back... so took her back yesterday for an ultrasound, which confirmed 2 vegetative growths in her bladder. Vet says from looking at the urine sample and the amount of blood in it, she doesn't think Cleo has more than 2 months before she'll have to be euthanized.

    Vet gave her a strong dose of steroid before I took her home, and I'm giving her 1/2 a Prednisone tablet daily for 10 days, then 1/2 tab every other day for 10 days.

    One of the most heartbreaking things is that except for discomfort in the litterbox, Cleo is behaving pretty normally, bouncing around, playing, terrorizing the 9 y.o. tabby , snuggling with me , eating... *sigh*

    While the vet and I discussed what to expect etc. I'm wondering if anyone else has some insight to my situation? I'll continue to love and cherish her and give the best of everything until the time comes, just thought I'd see if others had thoughts... She's not the first fur baby I've lost, but she's my favorite kitty and it all seems so unfair with her young age and all... TIA
    Last edited by texang73; Mar. 1, 2013, 02:40 PM.
    View my photographs at www.horsephotoguy.zenfolio.com

  • #2
    Im sorry

    Did you get a biopsy done? We have treated several cats for "masses" in their bladders which in turn were just benign polyps. However, yes...TCC and SCC are very likely possibilities as well.

    If you arent willing to go through biopsies, ask your vet about treatment with piroxicam, its an oral pill which is easy to give at home.


    • #3
      I am sorry about your kitty.

      I agree with Squish, you really should consider a biopsy (or remove if they are in the apex). I too have seen many polyps. Who did the ultrsound? I once saw stones read out as masses by a less experienced ultrasonographer.


      • #4
        Very sorry. Agree that you should see if they are polyps. SO hard to lose a young one. The youngest one I have lost was 7, and at that he lived a lot longer than the vet thought he would.
        What's wrong with you?? Your cheese done slid off its cracker?!?!


        • Original Poster

          Thanks... The vet performed the ultrasound and said the growths (there were two) were vegatative in shape (looked like broccoli) and Cleo has a large amount of blood in her urine (it's rust colored).

          Vet didn't mention benign polyps, but I will call her today to discuss and see if biopsy is an option. Though she seemed pretty sure they were not a benign growth, based off her years of experience (she's been a cat only vet for over 20 years and has seen many similar cases). But I'll try anything to make *sure* it's not cancer...
          View my photographs at www.horsephotoguy.zenfolio.com


          • #6
            If you are interested in treating, I would also ask your vet for a referral to an internal medicine specialist where the most up to date treatment options and diagnostics can be made available to you.

            Stones, cystitis, polyps and cancer can all cause major hematuria (blood in urine). Cant ever hurt to have a second set of eyes look and confirm/support or dispute the diagnosis And some bladder cancers are resectable.

            Jingles for your kitty.


            • #7
              Just yesterday I saw a cat with very bloody urine. Ultrasound by our radiologist showed stone stuck in blood clots adhered to the bladder. Your Kitty certainly could have cancer, but in a young cat there are many other things that could be going well as well. No one, regardless of experience, can diagnose cancer based off of an ultrasound alone.


              • #8
                Please get a second opinion. While it is possible that the masses could be cancer they could also be benign, impossible to tell without a biopsy.


                • #9
                  If you're in Houston - Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialists has veterinary Oncologists that should be able to give you a second opinion.


                  • #10
                    For a 4 year old cat, I would absolutely do a biopsy and see what you have.

                    My old cat started having constant bladder infections, where his urine was red/rust colored constantly. ABs seemed to help for a time (we didn't know it wasn't a bladder infection at that point) and finally, I ended up at the emergency specialty vet place on a Saturday where they felt a mass in his abdomen and did an US. There were massive growths in places where they shouldn't have been. I'm not sure the bladder wasn't involved - knew for sure the liver was. My Murphy was 19+ years old so obviously I did not opt to do the biopsy or treat him. I kept him comfortable for 2 weeks before saying good-bye.

                    Had he been 4, I'd have thrown everything at it that I could. You're baby is so young still that if you can, try to get a definitive diagnosis before giving up!
                    ~* Be kind to one another *~


                    • Original Poster

                      Thanks all. Cleo is going in for a biopsy tomorrow to get a better handle on what exactly the growths in her bladder are so as to know how to treat her medically in the best way possible.

                      I've also contacted the amazing Dr. Robinette about using acupuncture in addition to drugs etc. to help my girl but am waiting until I find out what the biopsy says so that Doc's fully informed before her first treatment.

                      The prednisone is working well, Cleo doesn't know she's sick so behaving quite normally which is heartening to see.
                      View my photographs at www.horsephotoguy.zenfolio.com


                      • #12
                        Thanks for the update. Keeping fingers crossed. Let us know w hat you hear.
                        What's wrong with you?? Your cheese done slid off its cracker?!?!


                        • #13
                          My experience

                          Just wanted to chime in as my favorite cat was diagnosed by my vet with TCC last november and was given a few weeks to a few months. The diagnosis was based ONLY on masses in the bladder seen in the ultra sound.
                          Like you she had rusty colored urine was drinking lots and urinating lots. I was de.vas.ta.ted!
                          Like your cat I had noticed that she responded well to prednisolone...
                          We have a vet school where I leave and I have a friend who is an oncologist. I became very suspicious of the diagnosis once I started reading about TCC, it is in fact very rare in cats (the oncologists at the vet college see about 1 case/year).
                          Long story short:
                          the vet totally misdiagnosed... the Usound was made on a bladder that was not full....... when repeated at the vet school on the full bladder, she only had a thikening of the bladder wall. Since we were quite sure by then that there was no TCC we took a "clean" urine sample and did both bacterial culture and a cytology which showed, of course, no transitional carcinoma cells.
                          Only a cytology done with appropriate staining for cancer cells and by a specialist will give you an answer- short of a biopsy.
                          My cat had cystitis due to an infection- we cultured and gave her the RIGHT antibiotic. These bateria, I am told tend to be ab resistant, in her case clavamox was shown during the culture to work.
                          The only catch of the "clean" urine sampling is that it means going with a needle through the bladder wall and if there are TCC they could seed in the abdominal wall along the needle track. This is the only way that you can do bacterial cultures. BUT on the other hand if you collect a urine sample naturally- you can have a cytology done- transitional carcinoma cells usually shed in abundance in the urine. (so do normal transitional and epithelial cells that would be seen by a non expert doing the urinalysis as "occasional" cells, that is normal).

                          I learned a lot... the other thing that I learned is that the vet shool corrects misdiagnoses made by primary care veterinarians very often.... I changed vet and I now ALWAYS ask questions and research.

                          Good luck!!


                          • Original Poster

                            Rider - Thanks for your sharing your experience. The vet gave Cleo lots of fluids for the ultrasound, as the first attempt they tried to do the ultrasound, the bladder was so empty they couldn't see anything, so they pushed fluids, waited abit and then did the ultrasound.

                            Cleo's having the biopsy done today, so hopefully that will help shed more light on what's going on. Fingers crossed for a good outcome/ results.
                            View my photographs at www.horsephotoguy.zenfolio.com


                            • #15
                              Your vet is obviously a better vet than my former vet, the ulrasonographer (not the vet) should also have known better, unfortunately he does pretty much all US for the independent clinics in my area!

                              I'll keep my fingers crossed that the biopsy comes back with good results


                              • Original Poster

                                Woooo hooo!

                                It's NOT cancer!!!! Woot!

                                The biopsy showed she has lymphoplasmacytic hypertrophic cystitis (basically means chronic inflammation) which can be treated with steroids and antibiotics. I'm also going to see about complimentary therapies (acupuncture, laser, etc).

                                The $200 for the biopsy was THE best money ever spent!

                                Thanks for the support! I'm off to do a major happy dance!!!!
                                View my photographs at www.horsephotoguy.zenfolio.com


                                • #17
                                  What's wrong with you?? Your cheese done slid off its cracker?!?!


                                  • #18
                                    Grinning for happy Friday update on kitty!


                                    • #19
                                      So glad that you got some good news!!


                                      • #20

                                        FANTASTIC NEWS!!!
                                        I am very happy for you and your kitty!

                                        I suspect that many cats are diagnosed with TCC and then treated with metacame or other drugs that end up killing them! Glad we both investigated!